Straight-talking Chester chef and restaurateur Gary Usher is cooking up his latest project as his empire grows.
Gary began with the acclaimed Sticky Walnut in Hoole, followed by Burnt Truffle in Heswall and then Hispi in Didsbury.
But Gary, known for his acerbic comments on Twitter, doesn’t sit still for long.
Now plans have been unveiled on Twitter for a fourth restaurant, Wreckfish Bistro, opening in a derelict 19th century watchmakers in Ropewalks, Liverpool.
The project will be another crowdfunding venture for Usher set to launch in March. However, this time, he is offering the people of Liverpool the chance to sample the fruits of the new venture before they invest any of their hard-earned cash.
Usher and his team will be hosting a series of pop-up dining events at the location from February 15-19, where guests will be invited to sample the food and get a feel for the venue, while setting their own price – a pretty big task for a space that currently has no water or electricity.
Gary commented: “This pop-up allows the customers to decide what they want from a restaurant in their area. We’re just going to have to be a bit creative with the logistics! Each of our restaurants has their own defining characteristics, from the style of venue and fit-out to what goes on the menu.
"We wanted to be able to gauge if people want a Hispi, Burnt Truffle or Sticky Walnut in Liverpool. When the bill comes, diners will be able to pay what they want, which will go straight into the crowdfunding pot.”
With many of Usher’s followers already keen to book in, reservations are limited to 30 people per day and will be available one month before each sitting, with the first date opening for bookings on January 15.
Alongside his team, Gary himself will be serving dinner between February 15 and 18 and Sunday lunch on February 19, with dishes such as stone bass cerviche, venison with pickled white cabbage and mushroom and chocolate tart, hazelnut mousse and honeycomb.
Gary added: “We want the experience to be totally raw – yes the food will obviously be a focus but ultimately it’s the immersive experience we want the diners to enjoy. We’ve had amazing support from local businesses who have offered everything from kitchen equipment and water pipes to chefs offering to pot-wash.
"We’re not a faceless, corporate business, we just want to offer local neighbourhoods amazing food and the chance to grow with us, which is why we’ll also be looking for Liverpool chefs to ultimately join Wreckfish.”
Like all of his restaurants, the Liverpool venture has already been announced, discussed, critiqued and named on Twitter, the go-to medium for all of Usher’s advice. To book, visit the website.